As faithful fashionistas will know, one trend nearly always invokes another. While the spring runways were awash with pastel hair hues, lately a bold new style has been staking out its spot in the fashion world: dip dyed hair. With celebrities like Lady Gaga and the effervescent Drew Barrymore leading the way, it is time to head back to your teenage years when a brightly-colored and chaotic dye job was just a bathroom mess away.
First, let’s take a look at our beauty mood board for some dip dye inspiration. Clearly, the Australians were ahead of the game, with both Abbey Lee Kershaw and Tallulah Morton trying vivid variations. Abbey Lee sported Schiaparelli pink strands for an editorial in Vogue Australia, while Tallulah Morton went for a bold blue in Oyster Magazine. Also trying out a confident color was the ever-audacious Lady Gaga. The pop singer opted for a bright, buttercup yellow back in January and spent almost a month rocking the golden locks (a lifetime in Gaga land).
While we love these brightly-imbued hues, we can’t look past the girls making darker statements. Katie Shillingford, fashion director at Dazed & Confused magazine, went for a dip dyed ombré look, with shades graduating from darkest black through violet to cream. Similarly, Drew Barrymore attended the Whip It premiere sporting colorblocked, black/blonde tresses.
For those of you brave enough to try this intense spring trend, we decided to head straight to the expert. George Papanikolas, of LA’s Andy Lecompte Salon, is the master behind Nicole Richie’s recently darkened tresses and was kind enough to give us a lesson in dip dying.
“It’s usually best to see a professional when trying something like this. You also might want to try a funkier salon, as they tend to have more experience in creating these kinds of looks,” says George. “If your hair is already light, use a vibrant color like Joico’s Color Intensities to get this intense look. If your hair is dark, you will need to pre-lighten it first to achieve this look.”
If you’re confident in creating this look yourself, George recommends using “either a high lift tint, or bleach to lighten the ends of the hair to a yellow.” Once you’ve taken this first step, apply the color intensities. “You may want to go a bit more vibrant with the color to start, as they quickly fade to a pastel tone. If you want a pastel tone, be sure to mix a lot of clear to dilute the pigments.”
Ready to try this look? George has one last word of cautionary advice: “Any time you lighten hair you are causing some damage, so it’s important to follow up with a series of weekly conditioning treatments like Joico’s K-Pak Reconstructor. Also be sure you are going to stay with a certain hair color for a period of time because it’s not always that easy to go back to the original color and still have the hair be in the same condition.”
Thanks to: George Papanikolas of the Andy Lecompte Salon.